Published: Thu, October 04, 2018
Life&Culture | By Mildred Hamilton

Facing $130M in Penalties, Fan Bingbing Apologizes for Tax Fraud

Facing $130M in Penalties, Fan Bingbing Apologizes for Tax Fraud

X-Men star Fan Bingbing has been ordered to pay taxes and fines worth almost £100 million pounds by Chinese authorities, but could escape prosecution, according to media in the country.

If Fan doesn't pay it back in time, tax authorities will transfer her case to public security officials for "handling", the news agency reported, without specifying what that would entail.

In late May, Fan was accused by TV presenter Cui Yongyuan of using "yin-yang" contracts (i.e. two agreements for the same work - one submitted to authorities and one hidden), thus avoiding tax on millions of dollars worth of earnings.

Xinhua reports that the government won't bring criminal charges against the actress because this is her first offense. She had instead paid taxes on a contract for only 10 million yuan, Xinhua said. However, Xinhua indicated that her agent, Mou Enguang, was not as lucky and is in custody for allegedly obstructing the investigation.

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"Without the favorable polices of the Communist Party and state, without the love of the people, there would have been no Fan Bingbing", she added.

Various companies related to the actress suffered the same issues and were ordered to pay around $42 million in late taxes and fees, plus an $86 million fine.

Fan Bingbing has addressed the speculation surrounding her disappearance.

She said she accepted the punishment meted out by the authorities and will pay the fine. However, fans can now breathe a sigh of relief as many have expressed worry for her. I have failed the support of my country, the trust of society, and the love of my devoted fans!

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Fan's abrupt fall from public grace has been one of the biggest news sensations in China in recent months, worrying fans and colleagues while delighting others who relished the travails of a rich celebrity.

"The studio and Fan Bingbing will fully cooperate with relevant authority, ' the actress" studio was quoted by Sina.com as saying in June. The example described in the report referred to a reportedly common entertainment industry practice - an actor having a public contract stating an official salary and a private contract detailing actual, much higher pay.

Rod Wye, a former official in the British Embassy in Beijing, also told The Sun last month: "For someone like her to be "publicly disappeared" sends out a message that no matter how high you rise the Party can cut you down again".

Fan also made an worldwide name for herself with appearances in Hollywood franchises such as X-men and Iron Man. She has turned heads at the Cannes Film Festival for years, to where fashion brands like Armani, Versace, Dior and Louis Vuitton want to dress her. Esquire's China edition named her the "Most Beautiful Woman In The Year" in 2012.

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